Express gochujang mushroom tacos

Do you believe in Korean-Mexican fusion ?

I’m not sure I did, but I sure do now ! And it makes sense ; these two countries do have a passion for fiery, bold food.

This tacos idea popped into my head on a weeknight, when I was wondering what to do with some mushrooms patiently waiting in my fridge. I was craving tacos, but I did not have the necessary time or ingredients to make authentic Mexican salsas.

Drooling about all these spicy salsas, it dawned on me : gochujang ! Gochujang is spicy, gochujang is a ready-made paste : just play around with it and it’ll make a damn good sauce !

The recipe is as simple as it gets :

  • tear apart your oyster mushrooms ;
  • mince some garlic ;
  • cook the mushrooms, while you mince your cheese and make the express sauce ;
  • assemble your tacos in a pan with some cheese.

Fair warning : these tacos taste amazing, even for non-vegetarian people. The meaty texture of the oyster mushroom is enhanced with my secret ingredient : smoked salt ! If, in addition, you turn up the heat by the end of the cooking time, you will get nicely brown, smoky-flavoured bites.

The melted cheese on top is just an added bonus.

Caution : It’s definitely not a very spicy recipe, but if you have to be ok with a bit of heat to enjoy these tacos. If you feel wary, you might replace half the gochujang with ketchup.

Express gochujang mushroom tacos – Recipe

Ingredients – Advice & key points

Four ingredients here might be tricky to find : tacos, Oaxaca cheese, Gochujang, and smoked salt.

  • For the tacos and Oaxaca cheese, if you’re in France or in Spain, you can order from La Esquinita. They also have a physical shop in Paris I go to. They don’t always have Oaxaca cheese, though ; when I can’t find it, I just replace it with mozzarella cheese (the harder kind sold in tubes, not the mozzarella balls, as they contain too much moisture).
  • For the smoked salt, I found mine in a cooking store in Paris : G.Detou. The easiest way to find it though if you do not live here is to order it online ! It’s ok if it’s not Salish smoked salt from Washington ; as long as it’s wood-smoked salt, it’ll be perfect.
  • For the gochujang :
    • If you’re in Paris :
      • you can go to Tang Frères in the 13th (they have other stores in Paris but be careful, some are small, this one is large) or Paris Store in the 10th ;
      • ever since I moved to the 18th, I’ve been going to XP 16 or Chen Market, but those shops are slightly smaller, especially XP16, and they sometimes run out of stuff. 
    • If you’re in France :
    • For my foreign friends : I bet you can easily find some Asian shops around you or online, but if you can’t, message me with your location and I will try to find it for you !

Ingredients & cooking – A few specifics

  • Tacos : As usual, I recommend using corn tacos, which are more traditional are flavorful than their wheat counterpart. But you can still use those if you want.
  • Gochujang : This is a traditional Korean red chili paste that also contains glutinous rice, fermented soybeans, salt, and some sweeteners. It’s Don’t buy Gochujang “sauces”, which are mostly packaged in bottles ; it needs to be a paste, which is highly concentrated, salty, savory and a teeny bit sweet. It is often packaged in red rectangular plastic boxes, or in glass jars.
  • Mushrooms : I tend to use a cast iron pan to get a nice char on those mushrooms, which I recommend. But you can still get a char with any pan you use. If the shroomies released too much moisture, just make sure to turn up the heat for a few minutes towards the end of their cooking time, when they’re dried and ready to brown up !

Now let’s taco !

If you want more vegetarian recipes, you can also check my Autumn mini-pizzas.

Difficulty: Beginner Prep Time 5 min Cook Time 25 min Total Time 30 mins
Servings: 3
Best Season: Fall


Those are incredible vegetarian tacos, ready in 30 minutes ! The meaty, smoky flavour of the browned mushrooms, enhanced with smoked salt, pairs perfectly well with the fiery hot, earthy flavour of the gochujang. You've got some tang, some umami, some sugary and savoury flavours, all in all reaching a great balance. 


For the Gochujang sauce

Optional topping


  1. Start prepping

    Tear your oyster mushrooms, with your hands, in smaller pieces, around a finger wide.

    Mince your garlic cloves (don't forget the sauce clove). 

    Don't chop your mushrooms with a knife ; if you tear them, the texture will be nicer and more meat-like.
  2. Cook your mushrooms

    Add your butter and oil to a pan, then warm over medium-high heat.

    Once hot, add your mushrooms. Let it cook for 5 minutes.  Add your smoked salt, then let it cook for around 7 more minutes, bumping up the temperature on the last 2-3 minutes. 

    While the mushrooms cook, mince your Oaxaca cheese and prep your sauce by mixing all the sauce ingredients together with a spoon. If using as a topping, mince your onion.

    When the mushrooms and cooked and charred, lower the temperature, add your sauce. Let it cook for a minute, then turn off the heat. 

    You don't salt your mushrooms as soon as they go into the pan, but 5 minutes later, so as to give them a chance to char before they release all their moisture (the salt does that). If they didn't, because the pan was overcrowded for example, don't worry ; just wait for the end of the cooking to bump up the temperature a few minutes !
  3. Taco assembly !

    Heat up your largest non-stick pan over medium-low heat. 

    Put 2 to 4 tacos at the time on it, depending on your pan size. Leave 20 seconds, then flip. 

    Put your cheese first, then your mushrooms : cover, and let it cook for about 2 minutes (or until the cheese is melted). 

    Remove from heat ; plate it up, add your minced onion if using. 

    Et voilà !! You're done ! 

    Edit : since making the video, I found that putting the cheese first allows it to melt faster and results in a better taco texture (less dry).


Do not add cilantro or Mexican hot sauce to this dish. Tested and unapproved ! It might be Korean-Mexican fusion, but the flavour profiles of these ingredients simply clash with the gochujang taste.  You don't need lime juice either, because the sauce is acidic enough with the rice vinegar and the tang from the gochujang.

Keywords: home made, comforting, mexican, tacos, mushrooms, gochujang, to share,

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